Reverse Culture Shock: Home Isn’t Static
You’ve returned to the place you used to call home, and things are not as they used to
Schwarzenegger succeeded despite everybody telling him "You have no chance to make it"
Arnold Schwarzenegger was born on July 30, 1947, near Graz, Austria.
He was an average student but stood out for his "cheerful, good-humored, and exuberant" character. Money was a problem in their family; Schwarzenegger remembered that one of the highlights of his youth was when the family bought a refrigerator.
Influenced by his father, he played several sports as a boy. When he was 14, his soccer coach took him and the rest of the team to a local gym. It was then that he began his long journey to turn himself into the greatest bodybuilder of all time.
He would go to the gym every day, and he would also break in the gym over the weekend to train.
"It would make me sick to miss a workout… I knew I couldn't look at myself in the mirror the next morning if I didn't do it."
It's even more remarkable when you consider the ninety-minute walk he has to travel to get there.
By the age of 20 was dominating the sport of competitive bodybuilding, becoming the youngest person ever to win the Mr. Universe title.
This victory immediately opened up his world. Not only he was now a star, but he also had the opportunities to train with people much more experienced and knowledgeable than him.
In 1968 Schwarzenegger took a significant opportunity, he decided to move to the United States and train with Joe Weider, the father of Mr. Olympia.
He went on to win five Mr. Universe titles and seven Mr. Olympia titles before retiring after the 1975 Mr. Olympia contest, to dedicate himself to acting.
Schwarzenegger wanted to move from bodybuilding into acting. He finally achieved it when he was chosen to play the role of Hercules in 1969's Hercules in New York. But his accent in the film was so thick that his lines were dubbed after production.
"It was very difficult for me in the beginning – I was told by agents and casting people that my body was 'too weird,' that I had a funny accent, and that my name was too long. You name it, and they told me I had to change it. Basically, everywhere I turned, I was told that I had no chance."
His big break came three years later with the movie CONAN THE BARBARIAN.
He took a variety of courses at Santa Monica College in California (including English classes), at the University of California, and Los Angeles. In May 1980, he formally graduated and received his bachelor's degree in business administration and marketing.
He got his citizenship in 1983, 15 years after he moved to the U.S.
After all this success, Schwarzenegger felt it was time to give back to the country that had made him a fortune. He was California Governor for two terms.
What a story! It made me realize that with passion, discipline, and hard work, you can achieve anything. He became a legend in bodybuilding, a Hollywood star and an idol for many kids of my generation, and a governor in a country that he wasn't born in. All this is one lifetime! Remember, he was just an average student coming from a not wealthy family.
What's your excuse for not chasing your dreams?